April in Southern California is a time for warm weather, long days & and cool cars. This year will be no different as hundreds of hot rods are expected to fill the front and back Fairplex parking lots at the Wally Parks NHRA Motorsports Museum for the first Twilight Cruise Night of the year, Apr. 5.
On the first Wednesday of the month from April through December the popular motorsports museum in Pomona, Calif., transforms into hot rod heaven as hundreds of cool pre-1970 rods, customs, classics, street rods and muscle cars are put on display at the museum which, is presented by the Automobile Club of Southern California.
This is the eighth year for the museum's Twilight Cruise Night program. The event, which runs from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m., and is hosted by the Cal Rods car club, attracts nearly 1,000 people and includes raffles, prizes and a huge 50/50 drawing. Celebrity judges will scour the ranks to find five of the best vintage vehicles worthy of a special prize a victory lap at the Auto Club Raceway at Pomona during the Auto Club NHRA Finals held Nov. 3-6, 2006.
The complete Twilight Cruise Night schedule is: Apr. 5, May 3, June 7 (Ladies' Night), July 5, Aug. 2, a special Aug. 30 date, replacing September's cruise due to the dates of the L.A. County Fair, Oct. 4, Nov. 1 and the annual Toy Drive on Dec. 6.
"When we started the Cruise Nights eight years ago, we established a tradition that has become a favorite activity for Southern Californian families," said Greg Sharp, curator of the Parks Museum. "Even if you're not a car enthusiast, our Cruise Nights are a fun way to spend an evening. On display are some of the rarest, most creative examples of automobile history around."
Each Cruise Night features a theme car, with past themes including Woodies, Willys, '32 Fords and vintage police patrol cars. The tradition continues this season as Sharp said, "The Museum encourages car clubs and collectors to participate by bringing and displaying their cars."
The Wally Parks NHRA Motorsports Museum, presented by the Automobile Club of Southern California, houses the very roots of hot rodding. Scores of famous vehicles spanning American motorsports history are on display, including winning cars representing 50 years of drag racing, dry lakes and salt-flat racers, oval track challengers and exhibits describing their colorful backgrounds.
The Parks Museum is open Wednesday through Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., PST, with extended hours during NHRA national events. Current NHRA members are admitted free. Admission for non-members is $5 for adults, $3 for seniors 60 and older, $3 for juniors six through 15, and free for children under the age of five. The Parks Museum is also available for private parties, meetings, corporate events, weddings and special group tours.
The Wally Parks NHRA Motorsports Museum, presented by the Automobile Club of Southern California, is located at Fairplex Gate 1, 1101 W. McKinley Ave. in Pomona. For further information on special exhibits, museum events or directions, call 909/622-2133 or visit ttp://museum.nhra.com .